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Changes coming to LGH


"It's going to be another blow for the town," says St. Anthony mayor Ernest Simms.

After the budget was brought down on May 1, it was discovered that provincial government is looking to amalgamate aspects of the health care system for its four health authorities. In a recent interview with TC Media, Health minister Steve Kent said in the coming weeks the department will look at a new shared-services organization that will consolidate the "back-office functions" of the regional health authorities. This could include payroll, information technology, finance and procurement.

"Every time you make a decision to move everybody to St. John's you are destroying every outport in this region, because you are affecting St. Anthony and every community that comes here for services," Simms said. "It's very concerning."

And while availing of technology to continue service could be the solution to saving money, Simms says it's not always the best choice.

He used May 4 as a prime example, when a fibre optic cable break severed all communication to the Northern Peninsula.

"I couldn't even get my prescription filled at a drug store, yet technology is suppose to be the answer?" he asked.

An interview with Tony Wakeham, LGH CEO, couldn't be arranged before deadline, but in a statement, Labrador-Grenfell Health says it welcomes the opportunity to participate in discussions that will reshape the administrative services which support the delivery of core health care services in the region.

It reads, "Labrador-Grenfell Health is involved in discussions with the Department of Health and Community Services, the other Regional Health Authorities, and the Newfoundland and Labrador Centre for Health Information (NLCHI) that will establish the framework for a shared-services organization. The Regional Health Authority supports the Provincial Government in its determination to identify and implement administrative efficiencies to ensure the sustainability of the health care system."

 

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